An investigation into keeper opinions of great ape diets and abnormal behaviour

Zoos are evidencing a shift in great ape diets to cultivated fruit-free to achieve a more wild-type nutritional composition (lower sugar, higher fibre). This study aimed to ascertain great ape keeper knowledge and opinions on the removal of cultivated fruit from great ape diets, to investigate feeding regimes currently in use and to understand the […]

Exploration of potential triggers for self-directed behaviours and regurgitation and reingestion in zoo-housed chimpanzees

The unique challenges faced by animals living in zoos can lead to the production of anxiety-related behaviours. In this study we aimed to understand what specific factors may cause chimpanzees to display these behaviours. In non-human primates, displacement behaviours, such as self-scratching and yawning, are considered markers of anxiety and stress, and Regurgitation and Reingestion […]

Urinary cortisol responses to unusual events in captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

This study investigated the urinary cortisol stress response to one known stressor (anaesthesia) and three unusual events hypothesized to result in increases in cortisol (confinement to one half of an enclosure for several days due to a hurricane, an enrichment exercise, and a change in group composition) in young chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). Although a cortisol […]

Life-long well being: Applying animal welfare science to nonhuman primates in sanctuaries

Nonhuman primates have become common in sanctuaries, and a few such facilities even specialize in their care. Sanctuaries can improve the well being of many unwanted primates, especially in terms of housing and socialization. However, diverse facilities call themselves sanctuaries, and they have varying conditions, care programs, and restrictions. In addition, a general lack of […]

Tool use task as environmental enrichment for captive chimpanzees

Wild chimpanzees spend 50–80% of their time foraging, using tools and other forms of manipulation, while captive chimpanzees cannot. In this study, a device—honey in a bottle to be “fished” with artificial materials—that elicits tool use was presented to six captive chimpanzees housed in pairs. The task successfully reduced inactivity by about 52%, increased foraging […]

The influence of rearing on personality ratings of captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

Personality traits of 43 captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) at five zoos in the United Kingdom were assessed. Chimpanzees were categorised into one of three rearing conditions: mother-groupreared (MGR), reared with others but separated from mother (RO), and reared alone for a period of time during infancy (RA). This study was interested in the effects of […]

Variables Influencing the Origins of Diverse Abnormal Behaviors in a Large Sample of Captive Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

The developmental origin of abnormal behaviors is generally associated with early rearing environments that lack sufficient physical and sensory stimulation. However, other factors should also be considered. A large sample of captive chimpanzees (128 males and 140 females) was surveyed for the presence or absence of 18 abnormal behaviors. Origin variables included the subject’s source […]

Responses to novel foods in captive chimpanzees

Hesitancy to eat novel foods hampers the immediate enlargement of the diet but serves to limit the risk of ingesting toxic foods. Neophobia has been systematically investigated in only a few primate species, in which it appears to be affected by social influences. Surprisingly, little is known about neophobia in chimpanzees. We studied the response […]

Color preferences in gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) and chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

Color plays an important biological role in the lives of many animals, with some species exhibiting preferences for certain colors over others. This study explored the color preferences of two species of ape, which, like humans, possess trichromatic color vision. Six western lowland gorillas, and six chimpanzees, housed in Belfast Zoological Gardens, were exposed to […]

Characterization of a novel simian immunodeficiency virus (SIVmonNG1) genome sequence from a mona monkey (Cercopithecus mona)

A novel simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) sequence has been recovered from RNA extracted from the serum of a mona monkey (Cercopithecus mona) wild born in Nigeria. The sequence was obtained by using novel generic (degenerate) PCR primers and spans from two-thirds into the gag gene to the 3 poly(A) tail of the SIVmonNG1 RNA genome. […]